87th LegislatureRep. Joe Moody Joins the Texas House Speaker Race

With Moody's announcement, the field to replace Speaker Dennis Bonnen in the 87th Legislative Session grows to eight.
November 3, 2020
El Paso state Representative Joe Moody is now the fourth Democrat in the race for Texas House Speaker, joining a field of four Democrats and four Republicans.

In his Election Day statement, he said, “Before the day is done, Democrats will take the Texas House. After the encouragement of a broad array of colleagues around the state, I’m proud to announce that I intend to lead it as Speaker.”

Pointing to looming redistricting, he added, “Representation matters, and we’re going to correct that immediately—the face of Texas government will be far more diverse than it’s ever been—but it’s not enough to give new people a peek behind the curtain. We have to tear that curtain down forever.”

Moody was first elected to the Texas House in 2008. In 2010 he lost to Republican Dee Margo but won the seat back in 2012 and has represented House District 78 ever since. He’s the vice-chair of the Calendars Committee and serves on the Business & Industry and Redistricting Committees.

In the 86th Legislative Session, Moody served as outgoing Speaker Dennis Bonnen’s (R-Angleton) speaker pro tempore. In May of 2019, Bonnen told the Austin American-Statesman, “I think Texas would be very blessed if there was a Democrat majority and Joe Moody wanted to lead the House,” if Democrats were to take the Texas House in the future.

The Texan Tumbler

Bonnen passed on running for re-election after recording a was released detailing a secret meeting between he and Empower Texans President Michael Quinn Sullivan in which the speaker offered a quid pro quo of press credentials in exchange for a list of moderate GOP targets.

Moody’s fellow Democrats in the race are Reps. Senfronia Thompson (D-Houston), Trey Martinez Fischer (D-San Antonio), and Oscar Longoria (D-Mission). The Republicans who have announced are Reps. Chris Paddie (R-Marshall), Trent Ashby (R-Lufkin), Genie Morrison (R-Victoria), and Dade Phelan (R-Beaumont).

Rep. John Cyrier (R-Lockhart) declared but then threw his support behind Morrison.

A clearer picture of the race will be visible after results come in tonight. Democrats need to pick up nine seats and keep the 12 they flipped in 2018 in order to gain the majority.


Disclosure: Unlike almost every other media outlet, The Texan is not beholden to any special interests, does not apply for any type of state or federal funding, and relies exclusively on its readers for financial support. If you’d like to become one of the people we’re financially accountable to, click here to subscribe.

Get “KB's Hot Take”

A free bi-weekly commentary on current events by Konni Burton.

Brad Johnson

Brad Johnson is a senior reporter for The Texan and an Ohio native who graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 2017. He is an avid sports fan who most enjoys watching his favorite teams continue their title drought throughout his cognizant lifetime. In his free time, you may find Brad quoting Monty Python productions and trying to calculate the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow.